Spring has sprung! We’re officially in the freshest season of the year, where everything is blossoming and starting anew. Isn’t it glorious? Sure, it’s all fine and dandy until you’re standing in the grocery line and someone has a sneeze attack all over you. Or you’re out for a morning run and can’t see because your eyes are covered in watery itchiness. Let’s be honest here, seasonal allergies bite. But, they don’t have to ruin your life. In fact, there are several steps you can take to minimize allergy symptoms.
Our bodies each have a threshold for toxins, bacteria, pollen, mold and contaminants. That’s why it’s important to take matters into our own hands and build up resistance an d reduce the load on our immune system. We can minimize our exposure to allergens and build up a higher threshold to resist seasonal allergies.
How? Follow these 10 ways to tame seasonal allergies so that you can actually stop and smell the roses—without sneezing.
Laundry Detergent & Fabric Softener
First up: Use non-toxic and unscented laundry detergent. Unfortunately, most commercial laundry detergents are chock-full of toxins and harsh chemicals. The same goes for fabric softeners, which is why instead I recommend using dryer balls. Symptoms from toxic laundry detergents include puffy eyes, sneezing and itchy throat. In fact, I always bring my own pillowcase when I travel and stay at hotels, otherwise I’ll wake up super puffy from toxic laundry detergent. Not worth it!
Air Fresheners & Scented Candles
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but air fresheners and scented candles are extremely toxic. Shockingly, scented candles emit harsh and dangerous toxins. A study from Copenhagen University discovered that fumes from candles inflict as much, or worse, damage to your body as diesel exhaust and cigarettes. Yikes! Lighting candles to unwind doesn’t seem so innocent now, does it?
Why are they so dangerous? Fake scents create inflammation in the lungs, ignite allergic reactions and cause headaches. Candles contain lead and industrial waste that creates respiratory issues.
Don’t worry, you can still tap into your zen without candles. Essential oils to the rescue! Add a few drops of essential oils to water in a spray bottle and you’ve got an air freshener. Swap candles for a diffuser to fill your home with sweet, safe and non-toxic scents.
Keep The House Clean
To thoroughly detox your life from harsh toxins and chemicals, you’ll want to keep the house clean. The trick is to not produce more harm by cleaning. Huh? Commercial cleaners are notorious for being filled with harsh chemicals that cause allergic reactions and health issues. To keep your house clean and free of toxins, use non-toxic cleaning products like Branch Basics.
If you have pets like I do, use a Molekule Air Filter to keep the air clean and free of bacteria. Additionally, Dysons or Roombas keep your floors clean and Pet dander from floating up into the air you breathe.
Use Allergen Bed Covers
Dust mites are inevitable, but that doesn’t mean we have to cozy up to them—especially not in bed! Using allergy covers on your mattress and pillowcases can reduce allergens and dust mites from causing respiratory or allergic reactions. Furthermore, you’ll sleep better knowing your bed is non-toxic.
Ditch The Memory Foam Mattress
To piggyback on creating a non-toxic sleep environment, you’ll want to ditch that memory foam mattress. Sure, you love it, it’s super cozy and you can’t fathom sleeping on anything but a memory foam mattress: but at what cost? Bottom line, memory foam mattresses absorb sweat and moisture from your body while you sleep, resulting in mold growth inside your mattress. Doesn’t sound so cozy now, does it? Mold is lethal to your health and one of the primary causes of allergies. Spring is all about new beginnings, so use it as a reason to start fresh with a non-toxic mattress.
Check Your Home For Mold & Mycotoxins
Speaking of mold… Mold is straight up awful and responsible for a slew of debilitating and dangerous health issues. The worst thing about it is that you can’t even see the very thing that’s perpetuating your health issues and seasonal allergies. Hidden mold is something that must be addressed. How do you find mold that’s hiding? Use the Mycometrics test to scan your home for mold. Additionally, use Homebiotic spray to protect your home from mold and eliminate odors. To add to the issue about 25% of the population has the HLA-DR gene which can not detox mold and mycotoxins.
Cut Out Dairy & Gluten
Dairy and gluten are food allergens that can agitate and cause inflammation. Both food groups are known for irritating the throat, causing mucus and sinus congestion. With so many alternatives available, it’s simply not worth eating these allergens—especially if they’re causing debilitating symptoms and allergic reactions.
If you suffer from buildup, mucus, throat irritation, or other allergy symptoms, it may be time to nix the dairy and gluten. Don’t worry, you can still eat delicious meals! I’ve got you covered with easy to cook, gluten-free, and dairy-free recipes from my cookbook, Wandering Palate.
Ditch High Histamine Foods
Food truly does influence the way you feel—especially during allergy season. Foods high in histamine start to build up to an overload of histamine in your body which causes symptoms like headaches, migraines, itchy eyes, congestion and runny nose. Histamine is a compound in your cells and occurs naturally in food. However, too much histamine can create a histamine intolerance resulting resembling of allergic reactions.
Cutting out high histamine foods will lower your histamine levels and ultimately, reduce histamine intolerance symptoms. Common high histamine foods include legumes, wheat, fermented dairy, canned foods, alcohol and tomatoes.
Opt For A Histamine Scavenger instead of an Antihistamine
Now that we’ve addressed high histamine foods, let’s talk about antihistamines. Over the counter antihistamines stop your body’s production of histamine. However, the body can actually end up producing more histamine. This is because antihistamines provide temporary relief from seasonal allergies, ultimately generating long term symptoms that perpetuate allergies. Rather than treating the underlying causes of seasonal allergies, antihistamines simply put a bandaid on the symptoms.
That’s why I recommend using a histamine scavenger instead. Instead of treating the symptoms of allergies, a histamine scavenger protects the body from foreign agents like bacteria and allergens. Using a histamine scavenger or DAO Enzyme helps your body break down excessive amounts of histamine. These options are especially helpful for those who are genetically unable to break down histamine.
Not sure if you have genetic histamine issues? Take the 23 and me genetic test, download your raw data and use a resources like MTHFR Support or Genetic Genie to see what other SNP. Too overwhelming to do it on your own? I recommend working with Bob Miller from Tree of Life for a full run down on how to support your genetics.
Neti Pot & Sinus Irrigation
Often, our nasal passages get clogged and produce pesky allergy symptoms. Use a Neti pot or sinus irrigator to flush debris, pollen and mucus from the nasal passage. Doing so will clear up your breathing and soothe nasal dryness. Additionally, you’ll reduce your toxic load by flushing out toxins, bacteria and pressure from your nose and sinuses.
As you can see, there are many ways to take precaution to minimize seasonal allergies. You can actually attack the issue from multiple angles to protect yourself. Taking action to minimize seasonal allergies means addressing your food habits, living quarters, the air you breathe and even the bed you sleep in. It’s worth it to finally kick seasonal allergies and actually enjoy the beauty of Springtime!
At the end of the day, it’s really all about reducing the load on your immune system with these tips, diet, detoxing and keeping your chemical and toxin exposure down.
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